The First International Congress on Maternal and Neonatal Health (IAMANEH) chose as its theme Primary Maternal and Neonatal Health Care: A Global Concern. If the primary goal of all World Health Organization member states of "Health For All By The Year 2000" is to be met, the most difficult challenge lies in the area of maternal and neonatal health care. Indeed, the preventable mortal ity of mothers and their newborns related to the quality of maternity care extracts a greater toll in life expect ancy than any specific disease category. Such mortality is but the tip of an iceberg of morbidity that saps the quality of life of a majority of this world's citizens. They are the less privileged by accident of birth only. An intolerable situation exists. These Proceedings reflect a world concern by m~n~s ters of health, academicians, scientists and providers of maternal and neonatal care. No blueprint is offered for solution of this world's greatest health problem. But the Proceedings do contain an accurate description of the problem and revealing epidemiological diagnoses that both lay bare deficiencies in care and suggest the way to im prove "health for all". The implications of these papers will not bring comfort to those responsible for the allocation of scarce resources for health. They rather suggest radical changes are needed and that failure to make these changes could mean a catastrophic and meaning less loss of life during the balance of this century.